Pit Boss Smoked Ribs

Ribs smoked low and slow are a BBQ classic. That tender, fall-off-the-bone rib meat, covered with sticky sweet BBQ sauce is a meal few can resist (I sure can’t!).

However, some people find smoking pork ribs to be a little tricky! If not done right they can come out chewy and dry! So make sure you follow my steps below for perfect ribs!

What You Need for Baby Back Ribs

  • Babyback ribs
  • Mustard
  • Barbecue spice rubs
  • Brown sugar
  • Butter
  • Honey
  • BBQ sauce

How to Smoke Baby Back Ribs

  1. Heat the Pit Boss to 250°F
  2. Pat dry the ribs with a paper towel. Coat with mustard, this is to help the rub stick Coat the ribs on all sides with an even layer of spice rub, using your hands to gently pat (not rub) it in.
  3. Smoke for approx. 2 hours.
  4. After 2 hours (or once the ribs have developed a nice bark), place brown sugar, butter, and honey on the butcher’s paper and place ribs meat side down. Wrap tightly and return to smoker.
  5. Return to the smoker for approx. 1-1.5 hours. Then unwrap the ribs and brush with BBQ sauce.
  6. Smoke uncovered until the internal temp of the ribs is approx. 195-203°F. The meat should have no resistance to probe and the rack should bend when picked up.
  7. Remove from the smoker and carve the ribs into pieces between the bones.
  8. Serve immediately.

How To Pick Ribs

Select ribs that have an even level of marbling through the meat. Just remember you want a little bit of fat on the ribs. As they smoke, the fats will break down and tenderize the meat.  

Watch for excess fat though, you don’t want overly fatty ribs, this will make the ribs chewy. Look for a full rack of baby ribs, not pre-cut slabs in sections, that way you can smoke the entire rack at once.

What’s The Best Way To Cook Ribs?

There are many ways to cook ribs. ovens, slow cookers, electric grills and barbecues! Using a pellet smoker is by far the easiest method! You don’t need to babysit a fire all day!

Fill the hopper with your selected pellets, set the smoker temperature (225°F), and leave them to smoke. Easy! No need for complicated smoker setups, wood chips, and water pans.

Whatever the method you use to cook, the preparation is the same. Rub with seasoning and brown sugar, set the cooking temp low and slow, and brush with a sauce during the cook.

How to Trim The Back Ribs

Baby back ribs don’t need a lot of trimming, unlike most other cuts. The only thing that needs attention is the membrane.

Remove this before preparing. If the membrane is difficult to remove without pulling the ribs apart, you can leave it in place. Ribs will cook fine with it attached, but won’t ‘fall-off-the-bone’ tender. 

However, the membrane won’t break down while cooking, so the ribs may remain chewy. I have some tips below on how to remove the membrane in one piece.

Preparing the Ribs

Remove the ribs from the packaging and give them a quick rinse. Pat dry with a paper towel. Turn them so the underside is facing you.

The white layer of tissue is the membrane that covers the majority of the ribs. Remove if possible. Use a sharp kitchen knife and begin in a corner to separate the membrane from the flesh underneath it.

When there’s a decent corner lifted, grip the corner with a piece of paper towel and peel back from the ribs. It should pull away in one piece.

Give The Ribs a Rub

Once the ribs are clean and membrane-free, it’s time to add the flavoring. Use a binder of choice, something like oil, mustard, or sauce.

The seasoning rub you use is your own choice. The only limit is your imagination but just make sure you get an even coating. Coat the top and bottom of the ribs for good flavor distribution.

What Temperature to Smoke Baby Back Ribs?

You should smoke baby back ribs between 225°F-250°F. Cook at this low temperature for 2 hours to infuse as much smoky flavor as possible. 

When to Wrap The Ribs

After the first couple of hours of smoking, the connective tissue will start to break down. This gives juicy and tender meat. After two hours, (or once the ribs have developed a nice bark), place brown sugar, butter, and honey on butchers’ paper and place ribs meat side down and wrap up. 

Adding a Sauce

After the ribs have been on the grill for a further 1.5 hours, increase the temperature to 250°F. Unwrap, watching out for the steam. Lay them out on a cutting board. Apply a light coat of whatever sauce you desire and put the ribs back on the grill grates.

When Are Baby Back Ribs Ready?

Smoke uncovered until the internal temp of the ribs is approx. 195° F to 203°F. The meat should have no resistance to probe and the rack should bend when picked up. Then they are ready to eat!

What Wood Pellets To Use?

You have a lot of options when it comes to wood flavors of ribs. Here are a few of the most popular ones:

Applewood

Applewood is great for pork and poultry. It has a subtle fruity flavor that doesn’t overpower. 

Cherrywood

As with apples, cherrywood is light and mild. It gives a great subtle flavor and color to whatever meat you are smoking.

Pecan or Walnut

These pellets give your food a sweeter, nuttier flavor.

Hickory

Hickory pellets have a stronger smoky flavor. They complement the natural flavors of red meats. The stronger flavor can overwhelm lighter white meats like pork.

However, if you enjoy a strong smoke flavor you might like using hickory.

Mesquite

Mesquite is one of the stronger, bolder flavors available. It has a strong, bacon-type flavor profile. Beef ribs or briskets go well with mesquite flavors. However, if you enjoy a strong smoke flavor you might like using mesquite.

Experiment and see what flavors you prefer. You’ll soon have your winning combination.

What to Serve With BBQ Ribs

Some of my favorite side dishes for ribs include

Smoked Corn

Smoked Mac and Cheese

Mediterranean Green Bean Salad

See the rest of my favorite side dishes for BBQ ribs here.

Pit Boss Smoked Ribs

Ribs smoked low and slow is a BBQ classic. If you have a Pit Boss then you have to try this recipe for smoked baby back ribs, its simple yet delcious.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time3 hours 30 minutes
Total Time3 hours 45 minutes
Course: Dinner, lunch, main, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 5 serves
Calories: 305kcal
Author: Charlie
Cost: 18

Equipment

  • Pit Boss Grill

Ingredients

  • 2 racks Babyback ribs
  • 2 tbsp Mustard
  • 2 tbsp Barbecue spice rubs
  • 2 tbsp Brown sugar
  • ½ cup Butter
  • 1 tbsp Honey
  • 1 tbsp BBQ sauce

Instructions

  • Heat the Pitboss to 250°F
  • Pat dry the ribs with a paper towel
  • Coat with mustard, this is to help the rub stick
  • Coat the ribs on all sides with an even layer of spice rub, using your hands to gently pat (not rub) it in.
  • Smoke for approx. 2 hours.
  • After 2 hours (or once the ribs have developed a nice bark), place brown sugar, butter, and honey on the butcher’s paper and place ribs meat side down. Wrap tightly and return to smoker.
  • Return to the smoker for approx. 1-1.5 hours.
  • Unwrap the ribs and brush with BBQ sauce.
  • Smoke uncovered until the internal temp of the ribs is approx. 195-203°F. The meat should have no resistance to probe and the rack should bend when picked up.
  • Remove from the smoker and carve the ribs into pieces between the bones.
  • Serve immediately.

Smoke On!

Charlie

Hi, I’m Charlie, I have been meat-smoking and grilling for the past 15 years. I have an array of different smokers, thermometers, and have a love for finding the right wood and charcoal combo My favourite recipes are my EXTRA CRISPY smoked pork belly, juicy pulled pork, smoked brisket, duck poppers, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill).

I loves sharing his tips with beginners, helping them navigate the world of smoking. I find it’s not just about cooking; it’s a quest for that perfect smoky flavor.

You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling recipes with you!

You can read more about me on our About Us page.

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